Grand Theatre

729 Wabash Avenue,
Terre Haute, IN 47807

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Grand Theatre

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Built on the site of the Variety Theatre, a vaudeville house of 1907. The Liberty Theatre was built in 1918 as a first-run movie house. This theatre later was renamed Grand Theatre. After closing it was converted into a warehouse for the Terre Haute Tribune-Star. It was demolished in the 2000’s.

Contributed by Bryan Krefft

Recent comments (view all 12 comments)

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on April 9, 2010 at 5:19 pm

The article to which BWChicago linked in a comment above identifies J.E.O. Pridmore as the architect of the Liberty Theatre. The article also says that the Liberty was not an aka for the Variety Theatre (which the article calls the Varieties Theatre in any case), but was a new building erected on the site of the earlier theater.

In addition, the article says that the Liberty was called the Grand Theatre from 1960 until 1977, and that the building has been demolished (apparently in 2007.)

DavidAE on October 19, 2013 at 6:06 am

Here is a link to a photo collection about the theater with a lot of history:

DavidAE on December 26, 2013 at 8:04 pm

Here is a link to photo of the Liberty in the bottom right hand corner. There is also another theater building half a block east and the roof of the one that was across the street, a little to the west.

DavidAE on December 26, 2013 at 9:23 pm

Here is a picture of the Liberty in 1935 on the left side of the picture.

DavidAE on January 17, 2017 at 10:41 pm

If I recall, the paper removed the main floor and installed a two story press on the basement floor.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on January 18, 2017 at 3:46 pm

Here is the Indiana Memory Project’s postcard image of the Liberty Theatre, probably from the 1920s.

Page 71 of Terre Haute & Vigo County in Vintage Postcards, by Dorothy W. Jerse and John R. Becker (Google Books preview) has a photo of the Varieties Theatre (built 1907) and a drawing of the Liberty, which “…opened soon after World War I….” The book’s copyright is 2001 and it says that the structure was housing the Star-Tribune presses, so the demolition of the building took place in this century.

DavidAE on August 2, 2017 at 7:32 pm

Postcard of the Liberty added to pictures.

Ora222 on August 9, 2017 at 7:24 am

Soybean, you are speaking of three different movie theaters. First there was the Grand Opera House, located at the SE corner of 7th and Cherry Streets. It opened in 1897 and was converted to the Grand Theater (to show motion pictures) in the early 1930s. This is the theater that screened Gone With the Wind. This Grand Theater was closed in 1959 and demolished in 1960.

Meanwhile, the Liberty Theater had been built in about 1919 at 729 Wabash, the SW corner 8th and Wabash. It operated continuously until about 1956 or 57, when it closed. When the first Grand Theater closed in 1959, the Liberty was renamed the Grand and re-opened in in 1960. It operated until 1977. The building was later taken over by the Tribune-Star. Demolished 2007(?)or so and now the Children’s Museum stands on that corner.

The theater that ran adult films was the former Garfield Theater in 12 Points, which re-opened as the Village Cinema and eventually ran XXX rated movies.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on August 9, 2017 at 2:24 pm

Ora222: One of soybean’s comments on another theater page indicate that he was born in 1950, so he would not have seen the original release of Gone With The Wind when it ran at the old Grand in 1939. It’s quite possible that the re-release soybean saw “…[w]hen I was growing up….” (so probably either 1961 or 1967, but possibly 1954) was shown at this house.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on December 22, 2017 at 3:13 pm

The records of Hugh J. Baker & Company of Indianapolis, fabricator of structural and reinforcing steel and concrete, indicate that they provided materials for the construction of the Liberty Theatre at Terre Haute in 1918.

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